The Digital Health Institute for Transformation (DHIT) team was joined by a spirited crowd of healthcare leaders, technologists, clinicians, and entrepreneurs for the May edition of our monthly Digital Health Happy Hour series in Charlotte, NC at Mito Station, a start-up incubator supporting healthcare innovation across the Charlotte area. The event was part of a series of healthcare-themed events being held at Mito Station and part of a larger series of events for Charlotte Innovation Week, a multi-day celebration of innovation and entrepreneurship in the Queen City. The evening was sponsored by our long-standing collaborators at Duke University’s Master of Management in Clinical Informatics (MMCi), a one-year master’s program designed for healthcare transformers who want to lead data-driven innovation in organizations around the world. Our main event of the evening was a fireside chat between emcee Michael Levy, DHIT CEO, and our featured speaker Becky Fox, the Chief Clinical Information Officer at Intermountain Healthcare and the former Vice President and Chief Nursing Informatics Officer at Atrium Health

Check out the highlights below!

Informed by her nursing background, Becky quickly found her niche in the field of Clinical Informatics as the translator between technicians and clinicians fostering seamless connections between care delivery and the technologies that support it. She remarked that, “sooner or later, everyone will interact with the healthcare system and we want clinicians to focus on what they do best: caring for patients, not building technology infrastructure. So I operate as a convener to smooth out the edges of technology adoption and push forward strategic planning to ensure seamless integration of care streams.” Becky’s role has expanded beyond her initial nursing jurisdiction, and now encompasses a broader range of responsibilities such as pharmacies and laboratories where her expertise allows her to provide comprehensive support and guidance.

Within the clinical enterprise, Becky emphasized how important “partnership” has been over the last decade. “Not so long ago the spirit of competition would often hinder progress as health systems and organizations operated in silos leading to wasted time, redundant processes, and knowledge gatekeeping. Thankfully, the paradigm has shifted and collaboration has become the cornerstone of driving meaningful change in healthcare. Whether you are a start-up or a major health organization, collaboration is essential to keep up. And there must be continual evolution in investing in large and small companies to leverage the expertise across all maturity curves to capture the cumulative impact of innovation and technology growth at scale.” Becky continued, “In my role, I see a partnership with a vendor as an extension of my reach – where we fill in our respective gaps. We both need to be successful. And that encapsulates the new flavor of healthcare.”

Becky closed by highlighting the “greatest success of her career.” In December 2020, the development of a vaccine to fight against COVID-19 was a significant milestone but disseminating it at scale was going to be a challenge (to say the least). “The field of informatics played a crucial role in the rapid deployment of the vaccine. In particular, my exceptional team stepped up to the plate and organized and executed against a successful mass vaccination event. We forged key alliances with the likes of Honeywell and Bank of America and in just six days pulled off a remarkable collaborative effort. We were able to supply vaccines to 16,000 individuals at the Charlotte Motor Speedway followed by another event for 20,000 people only five days after that.” She continued, “The experience was not only exciting because it contributed to the fight against the pandemic, but it also served as a powerful reminder that the healthcare industry has the ability to move quickly when necessary.”

Ultimately, Becky and her team’s success serves as a crucial reminder that collaboration and partnership require us to set aside egos and biases, and instead, foster a culture of innovation in order to enact real change at scale. By doing so, we can continue to make actionable strides and demonstrable impact in healthcare.

Much gratitude to Becky for the engaging discussion, Mito Station for their generous donation of the event space, the MMCi team for sponsoring the evening, and our vast ecosystem of partners for coalescing around shared visions of digital transformation across our communities and around the world.

Join us for our next Happy Hour event on June 21st in Pittsboro, NC at 79° West, the brand new innovation hub of Innovate Carolina at MOSAIC – Chatham Park.

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Talk soon!